18 Dec Prajna Paramita Heart Sutra, Part 18
[Series of Master Shen-Long expounding on the Prajna Paramita (Perfection of Transcendent Wisdom) Heart Sutra]
For us to attain the level of the Sixth Patriarch of Dhyana (Zen) Buddhism is too difficult. We also cannot have the verification into the level of Arhat. However, chanting Amitabha and to united with Amitabha thought after thought without distracting, everybody can do. Your sphere of attainment in comprehension the truth is the same and indifferent from all Buddhism sects, but there is one specialty, which is that you have the blessing of Amitabha’s vow power. Granted your verification of the truth is not up to the highest level, but you only need to be 20%. It means that even within one day, your mind is purified of defiling illusion for 20% of the time, you will have the opportunity to be born to the Bliss World of Amitabha Pure Land. If only at 10% it is hard to say, at 20% there is a chance. Of course, if you go beyond 50% then one is confident with success. But I cannot demand this of you, I can only let you know about this phenomenon.
In Taiwan, many people chant Amitabha when they approach their end, without sickness, have no suffering and entry into the state of Samadhi (the highest level of mind fixed and undisturbed). However, the average person is unclear about this and does not know how the person died, piling error on top of errors. But at least there are 400 to 500 people who had a purified body and mind, no defilement, and were crystal clear when they left. This is truly not easy to attain. This kind of situation, simply stated, is a miracle in Christianity, yet it is not. Frankly speaking, most of them who have gone were ordinary unenlightened people, perhaps a few senior monks and great virtuous ones. In general, some of them even were illiterate and they relied on this name of Amitabha.
Why? An aged person with nothing to do. One chants the name of Amitabha daily, chanting to the end and one let’s go of everything. After letting go of all there is no more pressure. Exactly as what the Sutra describes. One knew exactly when to go to the Bliss World of Amitabha Pure Land and knew when Amitabha comes to meet and receive.
When he told the people around him, people thought that he might be beyond cure? Or was he going too overboard with a superstitious belief?
Yet strangely, the time and the situation all occurred as to how he had described. He left either by standing or sitting, and you cannot say this was not a miracle. However, these people were ordinary and simple, and they were not in particular. Therefore, Amitabha and Shakyamuni Buddha explain publicly and repeatedly in Sutra scripture, furthermore, he says that all Buddha Bodhisattva of the ten directions encourage everyone to use this method of chanting Amitabha.